Four Britons among seven foreigners freed in Cambodia after 'pornographic dancing' arrests

8 February 2018, 12:53

A court in Cambodia has granted bail to seven foreign nationals, including four Britons, who were arrested for "pornographic dancing" during a pub crawl.

The Foreign Office confirmed four British men had been released and one British man remained in custody.

A spokeswoman said: "Our staff continue to assist four British men who were arrested and subsequently released in Cambodia, and one British man who is still in custody.

"We remain in contact with the Cambodian authorities."

Ten people, including five Britons, were detained last month during a raid on the 'Let's Get Wet' event in Siem Reap province.

Defence lawyer Ouch Sopheaktra said the other two suspects still being held are from the Netherlands and Norway.

Those released cannot leave the country yet as their passports were taken away, a court spokesman said.

Bianca Brasch is the sister of one of the men detained.

She says she doesn't know much about what is happening with her brother, who is from News Zealand.

She told Sky News: "We don't really know much at this stage... I don't see why they are even on bail they should just be allowed to go home. We are just hoping that they should be allowed to go home soon."

The group of eight men and two women, aged between 19 and 35, were charged with "producing pornographic pictures" and told they could face up to a year in jail if convicted.

Local police produced photographs showing clothed and laughing tourists, some in sexually suggestive positions.

Another 77 foreigners also arrested at the event were later freed after being "educated" over their unacceptable behaviour, police said.

Sources close to the families of the 10 people arrested told Sky News that a $40,000 (£28,000) demand had been made for their release.

The detained Britons were Vincent Harley Robert Hook, 35, Daniel Richard Leeming Jones, 30, Thomas Alexander Jeffries, 22, Billy Stevens, 21, and Paul Francis Harris, 32.

It was not immediately clear who among them remains in custody.

The other members of the group are: Job Robertus van der Wel, 22, from The Netherlands; Canadians Jessica Drolet, 25, of Ottawa, and Eden Koazoleas, 19, of Alberta; David Nikolaus Aleksandr Ballovarre, 22, of Oslo, Norway; and 32-year-old New Zealander Paul Martin Brasch.

Cambodia, a conservative Buddhist country, is a popular destination for young tourists back-packing through Southeast Asia.